When Debbie, at A Quilter's Table announced that this week she'd focus on beverages and appetizers, I wasn't really sure what I'd write about. Then I remember a prior post I'd done a few years ago about coffee roasting. Since moving from Michigan back to Oregon, I haven't roasted any coffee (the glass roasting bin cracked during the move). But we did get a replacement, and who knows, maybe I'll start roasting again, as coffee prices have really gone up in the last year or so.
started roasting my own coffee several years ago as a way to save money. I wanted to drink organic fair trade coffee, but the price for
such was so expensive. I don't remember where I found out about coffee roasting, but somehow found and decided to buy a small coffee roaster from Sweet Maria's Home Coffee Roasting Company. In Oregon, getting good coffee was never an
issue. My kids' earliest memories must include regular trips through numerous coffee drive-through stands that are scattered through out
The world of coffee can be compared to the
wine world. There are so many varieties, so many regions, several ways
to process the coffee cherry to make the green bean. Each variety and
region has it's own flavor and characteristics. It's really an
When we moved to Northern Michigan I came to depend on my coffee roaster to
make my own coffee. In small town rural Northern Michigan, it was hard to find the same quality of coffee I had gotten used to in Oregon. It's so much better, and cheaper. I have control over the coffee, where
it comes from, how long I roast it, etc... Sure it's a bit of effort,
but well worth it.
it's not rocket science. You simply put the green beans in the roaster
and turn the timer on. You have to know the different roasting
levels... As the beans roast, they expand, and "crack". It sounds a bit
like pop-corn popping. After the first crack, the beans can be ready
to grind into coffee, if you like that style. They'll be light brown.
Most people prefer a fuller bodied coffee though and continue the
roasting a bit further. If you roast long enough, you'll get to the
"second crack" stage. Once again, the beans make their distinctive
crack, but this time the oils in the coffee bean are released. This
makes it very easy for them to burn. Not good. Once that second crack
is done, you need to remove them from the heat and cool them. Then your
fresh home-roasted coffee is ready to brew into my favorite beverage...